Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Atlanta Falcons 2016 - Now I can appreciate it.

Devonta Freeman
While Atlanta’s Super Bowl loss still stings I’m definitely ready to move on and look back at the great season the Falcons had this year.  It was a pleasant surprise that ended with Atlanta being oh so close to winning it all.  When the Falcons dropped to 7-4 after a devastating loss to Kansas City I really wondered where the season was headed.  While they were still in good shape for a playoff spot they just didn’t have the feel of a world beater.   Then they won four games to finish 11-5 and you saw things clicking as they landed the number two seed.   In the playoffs they hit their stride and their defense took it to another level.  Their number two seed allowed them to skip the wild card round and play at home against Seattle and Green Bay.   Atlanta looked like a Super Bowl contender in both games just as they did for just over two quarters in the Super Bowl.

Julio Jones
Matt Ryan and the offense were historically good.  He deserved the MVP trophy he brought home, the first in Falcons team history.  Devonta Freeman had another 1,000 yard season on the ground while catching 54 balls.  Tevin Coleman is a great compliment and the running game as a whole averaged an outstanding 4.6 yards per carry.  Julio Jones who has always been a stud was able to show off his stuff on the big stage in the playoffs and Super Bowl.  He is right there with A.J. Green as the premier wide receiver in the league.  I know little guy Taylor Gabriel gets more press but free agent Mohamed Sanu probably made the biggest difference in the receiving corps.  Atlanta needed a number two receiver badly and he gave the Falcons exactly what they were looking for.  Speaking of free agents the biggest pick up was center Alex Mack who solidified the offensive line (which had the same starting five for every game including the playoffs) ensuring plays could develop and provide solid blocking for the running game.

Matt Ryan
There is definitely hope for next year.  While getting back to the Super Bowl is against the odds you have to think this team has what it takes to do it.  The defense will get back their top cornerback in Desmond Trufant who was out after week 9 with injuries.  That side of the ball will have to restock some due to some players expected to leave but nothing that can’t be overcome.  The loss of offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan may be the biggest blow to this team.  Steve Sarkisian will replace him but it is hard to tell how that will affect  the offense.  He is definitely an unknown in the NFL.

For now I’ll sit back and appreciate the season that was.  They don’t come around too often  unless your teams is named the Patriots.  Tons of great stuff to like and much to look forward to next season.  Now I just need to order that NFC Championship hoodie…        



  1. Your Falcons had a great season! They manhandled both of my teams this postseason. I'm super close to starting a Julio PC, because that guy is straight up AMAZING.